Catlin: "This was a wasted opportunity"
Boro' wasted several good chances and were sunk by first half penalty as they slipped to narrow defeat against St Neots Town.
Gosport manager Mick Catlin admitted that his team had "wasted an opportunity" to break their Southern Premier Division duck after watching them slip to their 15th league defeat of the season.
Boro' had several nailed-on chances in front of goal against ten man St Neots who had Kyron Wiltshire sent off midway through the second half but despite the home side enjoying the numerical advantage, they were unable to capitalise and were eventually sunk by Dylan Williams' early penalty.
The frustration around Privett Park was tangible as Iffy Onwauchwu and Matt Sinclair both missed the best chances and consequently, the home side weren't able to find a way through.
This ensured Gosport remain adrift at the bottom of the table ahead of a two week break from league action. Their next game could hardly be more important - a crucial six pointer against fellow strugglers Dunstable Town.
On a bright and breezy afternoon, both sides produced a high-tempo start to the game creating plenty of chances and penalty area action without actually threatening each other.
St Neots won a 12th minute penalty when Wakely brought down Sembie-Ferris, allowing Dylan Williams to slot home the spot kick sending Price the wrong way. Little did anyone realise that the game had already been settled.
St Neots' Sinclair was forced off the pitch with an injury after coming off worst in a collision with Onwauchwu leading to the visitors introducing Horne. Price made an improvised save to deny Parr a second as St Neots continued to probe.
Boro' should have equalised when Frankie Paige’s storming run down the right resulted in a delightful cross picking out Onwauchwu unmarked at the far post. Sadly for him and Gosport he put his free header wide. It was a telling miss.
There was little further incident until the 58th minute when St Neots were reduced to ten men. Kyron Wiltshire was sent off for a late, clumsy and arguably spiteful challenge on Harry Medway which led to referee Lewis Sandoe issuing a straight red card to the visiting midfielder.
Gosport began to try and make the numerical advantage count as Onwuachwu and Mears combined to test the visitors defence as the home side worked hard to find a way back into the game.
But St Neots were also still dangerous with Sembie-Ferris always a threat. Williams forced Price into a smart save whilst at the other end a cracking Dale Mason cross was almost turned in by Sinclair. However, the Gosport man was denied in the second crucial miss of the afternoon. This and the earlier one from Onwauchwu were key.
Gosport pushed hard deep into stoppage time but there was to be no way back into the game despite another gritty, battling performance. The margin between defeat and a result was so narrow and it left Boro' boss Catlin rueing what he later described as a "wasted opportunity".